This week’s round-up includes artists from all different lanes on the pop highway: From newcomers just beginning to build buzz, to international crossover acts on the brink of breakout, to the almighty Queen of Pop herself.
Got your pom-poms on hand? Ready? OKAY! L-E-T-S G-O!
1.) Madonna featuring M.I.A. and Nicki Minaj, “Give Me All Your Luvin’”
Ladies and gentlemen: The Queen of Quite Literally Everything has finally returned. After over a three-year hiatus since 2008′s Hard Candy, the almighty icon Madonna has returned to the musical forefront with “Give Me All Your Luvin’,” the lead single from her forthcoming twelfth studio album, MDNA.
Filled with stadium-sized cheerleader chants (“L-U-V, Madonna!”) and a rollicking synthesized drum line, the Martin Solveig-produced banger finds M snagging fellow industry rule-breakers Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. to deliver one of her most mindlessly gleeful tunes yet: “Give me all your luvin’, give me your love today!” Madonna glibly bounces atop the song’s spacey beats, like a 21st-century update to Toni Basil‘s swoon-filled cheerleading classic, “Mickey.”
While the Material Girl has promised some introspection on her upcoming record, between the tongue-in-cheek silliness of the video and the pom-poms aloft revelry of her Super Bowl performance, it seems Madge is only interested in having some fun right now.
So get into the groove, dance and sing, and bow down in reverence: It is the Queen, after all. + LISTEN TO MADONNA, “GIVE ME ALL YOUR LUVIN” FEATURING M.I.A. AND NICKI MINAJ
2.) Simon Curtis, “Flesh (Vincent Did It Remix)”
The Robot Boy is back for another bite. Last May, rising pop sensation Simon Curtis released the sinfully delicious “Flesh,” recalling all the naughty innuendo and breathy come-ons of Brit Brit‘s ex-sexin’ “Inside Out.” Now, in celebration of his newly relaunched website filled with new exclusives surrounding his sophomore studio album RA, the pop prince has enlisted Vincent Did It (formerly of Frankmusik fame) to mix and mash his sizzlin’ sex affair.
The result? A wicked, wildly exciting mix full of throbbing synthesizers and hectic ’80s-swizzled electronica: “Get undressed/Taste the flesh,” Curtis demands above a beat that’s guaranteed to have you breaking a sweat–whether you’re working out at the gym, or, um… you know, doing whatever it is you want to do to this song. + LISTEN TO SIMON CURTIS, “FLESH (VINCENT DID IT REMIX)”
+ Listen to more Must-Hear Pop Songs Of The Week after the jump!
3.) Graffiti6, “Free”
After getting signed to Capitol Records in the U.S. in 2011, London-based Graffiti6 have been rapidly whipping up major buzz in America over the past few months. The group, consisting of offensively attractive, smooth-voiced lead singer Jamie Scott and prolific songwriter and producer Tommy-D, has been impacting the States by having their tunes featured on major television shows — everything from MTV’s “Teen Wolf” to “One Tree Hill” to “CSI: NY.”
Before hopping on tour with Augustana in February, the band released their debut record Colours in January, an album chock full of soulful, psychedelic-tinged guitar pop and uplifting jams like “Stare Into The Sun” and “Annie You Save Me.”
Last week, the group’s song “Free” was featured on iTunes — for free! — as Single of the Week: “If I lay my head down on you, would it be, would it be too late?” Scott ponders in a near-whisper above the song’s gorgeous, slow-building ’70s stomp filled with organ flares and chiming bells.
For the record, the answer is no: It is never too late. There will always be time for you, Jamie Scott. + LISTEN TO GRAFFITI6, “FREE”
4.) Gareth Emery featuring Christina Novelli, “Concrete Angel”
Looking for a new go-to club anthem to get you hyped before a night out? London-bred trance DJ Gareth Emery’s got you covered. With his upcoming release on February 13, “Concrete Angel,” the industry veteran has paired with singer-songwriter Christina Novelli to provide the crystalline vocals on top of his surging new dance floor anthem: “If you keep building these walls/Brick by brick, tower so tall/Soon I won’t see you at all ’til the concrete angel falls,” Novelli delicately echoes above the angelic chorus before bursting into an utterly heaven-sent beat drop.
While the song makes for a killer club cut, it’s just as much of an emotional tune — so don’t be too surprised if you find yourself getting a little choked up in between the pulsations. + LISTEN TO GARETH EMERY, “CONCRETE ANGEL”
5.) Tinashe, “Let You Love Me”
From fronting the short-lived girl group The Stunners to releasing her debut single “Artificial People” (which I first wrote about back in September), rising pop sensation Tinashe has constantly been bubbling under as a major artist to watch.
Now, the 19-year-old songstress has proven herself yet again with her über-experimental debut mixtape, “In Case We Die.” The concept record, recorded and produced over three weeks in her bedroom, demonstrates a vastly more mature ear than her age would suggest: Full of drippy beats, atmospheric noise and and sexy croons echoing off in the distance, the mixtape recalls the moodiness of The Weeknd or Kanye West‘s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy — an incredibly impressive sound to achieve.
“Let You Love Me” is just one of the mix’s many highlights: “If this is something, that you’re trying to f— with/Tell me if you’re down/I’m down now,” the singer sexily croons above the ghostly, hollow beat tripping underneath. In Case We Die is one of the year’s first truly exciting and creative releases already — so if you’re not paying attention, begin doing so now. + LISTEN TO TINASHE, “LET YOU LOVE ME”
Bradley Stern is a writer from Connecticut. In his spare time, he enjoys organizing his Britney Spears CD collection in reverse chronological order and plotting the various ways in which he will bring down Katy Perry to become Rihanna’s best friend. But most of all, he spends his time tweeting and musing daily about pop music on his blog, MuuMuse.
Photo credits: Tinashenow.com, Getty, Michele Crowe, Joseph Sinclair, Simon-Curtis.com